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Saveur-March Butter Issue

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Normally I don't find the Saveur issues exciting enough to buy, but there are some really classic recipes this month due to their focus on butter. Also, lots of info about thw great multi-purpose compound. I get the impression that their recipes are quality, though I've never tried one, thoughts?

here are some of the recipes:

pound cake
risotto alla milanese
asparagus with hollondaise
hungarian shortbread
tibetan stew
escargot a la bourguignonne
keema matar (gound lamb and peas in yoghurt)
sole a la grenobloise
moroccan chicken stew (with smen)
chicken kiev, how i love a good chicken kiev
butterscotch sauce with vanilla ice cream

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  1. I like saveur, it gives in-depth "socio-cultural" aspects of the foods they feature which I like. I'll admit some of their recipes take specialized ingredients and are not all that easy for a home cook or are preparations that are not familiar to the American kitchen but I've tried many of their recipes, even making substitutions if necessary and even though my versions may not be authentic it makes cooking a little less mundane.

    1. I've been getting Saveur for years. Their recipes are generally pretty good; sometimes they are little complex. But if you cook regularly and feel comfortable in the kitchen, you shouldn't have any trouble with them. Personally, I like that they don't "dumb" down the recipes. Most food mags want to keep recipes as short as possible,and avoid exotic ingredients. But if they avoid them, how do you ever learn about them?

      You're right. The March issue is the best one in awhile.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Annabelle_cooks

        ITA. I still love Saveur, although I loved the original format a lot more, and I certainly suffered through their big editorial changes back when.

      2. Had to laugh when my issue came in the mail, that was the day I decided to become a vegan!

        1. Saveur is good food porn...but like all porn and in the case of the butter issue, it went on 15 pages too long. The "centerfold" of all the different types of butter and quick explanations was great. Some of the recipes look good but they do seem to go on and on. Many have questioned Saveur's testing and reliablity on recipes. I've tried a few and they worked fine but then I never stick strictly to stated.

          15 Replies
          1. re: ML8000

            I like Saveur and have been getting it for about 18 months. I like the editorial. I tried the Chicken Kiev and will try it again. I like their recipes. They had a stuffed clam recipe back in August or September that we've had over and over.

            1. re: ML8000

              The butter cover is probably one of my favorites in the past year or so. I make no secret of my absolute obsession with butter. Perhaps it's all those French cookbooks? Whatever the case, I had fun with this issue. We're lucky enough to have several great markets near us so we have access to many of the butters listed in the "centerfold". I even branched out last week and picked up a goat's milk butter, something I haven't had yet. I'm going to experiment by using it in my potato puree for a lamb dish I'm doing this week. I'm hoping the goat's milk will bring a new note to the butter not found in traditional cow's milk butters.

              R. Jason Coulston

              1. re: Jason_Coulston

                Oh, do post on the homecooking board about your goat butter experience! I've seen it around, but am not sure what to use it for. It'd be cool to find out more.

                1. re: linguafood

                  I'll let you know how the goat's butter experiment goes. We're preparing a relatively ambitious menu for the owners/winemakers from Thompkin Cellars this coming weekend and that's the meal I referenced for the goat's milk butter debut. I'll probably post a full report of everything in the other forum by Sunday or Monday. For posterity though, this is the potential menu:

                  Alcase Tart
                  Crème Fraiche, Lardon, Onion Confit, Puff Pastry
                  (Paulaner Hefeweizen)
                  Free-Form Ravioli
                  Ricotta, Poached Egg, Brown Butter
                  (Savenierres provided by Thompsons/Dobkins)
                  Cauliflower Gratin with Curry Spice & Gruyere
                  Braised Berkshire Pork Belly
                  Puree of Yukon Gold Potato with Goat's Butter
                  Roasted Carrot, Spiced Braising Jus
                  (2005 Chateau de Saint Cosme Gigondas)
                  Olive-Oil Poached Lamb
                  Falcon Beans, Tomato, Rosemary
                  (Hermitage provided by Thompsons/Dobkins)
                  Vanilla Pots de Crème
                  Chocolate Madeleines
                  House-Turned Vanilla Ice Cream

                  R. Jason Coulston

                  1. re: Jason_Coulston

                    that sounds wonderful. the alsatian tarte sounds like a tarte flambee, though the versions I've had used a thin pizza-type crust, not puff pastry. lighter in a way i think.

                    1. re: fara

                      Not to diverge away from the butter conversation at hand, but I think you're right about most tarts from that area. Usually, I believe, they're on a lighter yeast type of dough. I just happened to have picked up some lovely Dufour puff pastry at Picnics last week so I thought I'd put it to use for this course. It might end up being too rich/buttery for the other ingredients but a little indulgence never hurt anybody.

                      R. Jason Coulston

                    2. re: Jason_Coulston

                      Wow. Is it still too late to invite myself? :-D I am literally (no, really LITERALLY) drooling as I am reading this....

                      Can't wait to hear about it next week!!!

                      1. re: linguafood

                        UMMMM what time is dinner??? I am interested where you found the pork belly.

                        1. re: Ela0427

                          Robert from Picnics in Costa Mesa, CA sells whole Berkshire Pork Bellies out of his freezer case. They've got beautiful white fat and are priced at $6.00/lb.

                          R. Jason Coulston

                          1. re: Jason_Coulston

                            Wow -- thanks for posting that. I was wondering if I get could get Berkshire pork belly around here and I never would have thought to call Picnics.

                            1. re: emily

                              I'm not sure where you're located, but if you're local to Southern California or, more specifically, Orange County, then that's a must visit shop. I'm not sure if they would be prepared to ship anything, but it's worth a try if you can't make it in-person. You can reach them at 949.722.7200.

                              R. Jason Coulston

                                1. re: emily

                                  In that case you simply MUST swing by Picnics Deli (Costa Mesa. It's on 17th Street between Tustin Ave. & Irvine Ave. Look for it in the center with the new "Holy Scrap" store going in at the corner. It's just west of Frazee paint on the same side of the street. Any foodie in OC would love having lunch there then going shopping.for wine, cheese, or any other groceries. The owners are Robert & Jeana and one or both will be there. They're not open on Sunday or Monday.

                                  R. Jason Coulston

                  2. re: Jason_Coulston

                    Well how can you not like butter. When in doubt, butter will likely fix most things. Seriously, people are genetically programmed to like butter. Eating it is a base instinct..and it tastes sooooo good. Butter on good toasted bread can make my day.

                    The goat milk butter also had me intrigued as well. Any reports about it would be great. Lamb and certain mediterranean food sounds like a natural use.

                    1. re: Jason_Coulston

                      I tried goat butter recently at Aqua in SF. It was one of two butters presented with the bread at lunch. (tee hee I know "butters presented") It was really quite good, a little less rich-tasting than cow's milk butter. Subtle goaty taste, similar to really fresh high quality chevre.

                  3. That was also one of my favorite issues. I also like Saveur. I call it Bourdain's A Cook's Tour in magazine format.

                    1. I love Saveur Magazine -- I have been ordering since they came out in 1995 (?) -- I am only missing the first issue. There is always something to learn and I find it more informative than Cook's Illustrated.

                      And this issue is great. I made the pound cake, which is wonderful. AND I made butter as a host gift this past weekend. And with the buttermilk, I made pancakes.

                      1. Sorry that I am sort of stealing this post here. Did the magazine recommend any specific brands of butter? I am always looking for what's new and the best butter out there!

                        6 Replies
                        1. re: kobetobiko

                          Yes, there's a 2 page spread on recommended butters and uses. I believe Pamplie (available at my local Whole Foods) was rated high as a butter to spread on bread (as opposed to baking with).

                          1. re: emily

                            I loved it that good ol' Challenge butter - which is dirt cheap at Trader Joe's - was right up there with the Kerrygold!

                            By the way, as a sort of contrast to the poster who became a vegan the day that issue arrived, I had just decided to try my hand at a butter-intensive item not mentioned in there - gougeres, Burgundian cheese puffs made with choux paste - and felt like the folks at Saveur were cheering me on! They came out well enough to make me try'em again, by the way...

                            1. re: Will Owen

                              My sister recently made homemade caramel. It was great..which got me thinking after seeing the Saveur stuff about using some really good butter, or even goat milk butter in a small batch, just to see how it turns out.

                          2. re: kobetobiko

                            I checked the Saveur website and they have the list of recommended butters on there. Here's the link:


                              1. re: kobetobiko

                                Hey, if anyone tries the Keema Mattar recipe, please let me know how it came out. It's my other half's favorite dish, but we usually just order it takeout.